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Reform for Recurring Low-Performing Schools

Policy TitleReform for Recurring Low-Performing Schools
Policy CategoryDistrict and School Transformation (DSTR)
Policy IDDSTR-040
Policy Date2016-05-05
Statutory ReferenceG.S. 115C-105-37.B

Formerly GCS-C-040

A local board of education may request to implement a school improvement model pursuant to G.S. 115C-105.37B as follows:


  1. Eligibility

In order to be eligible to apply for a school improvement model, the LEA must demonstrate that the particular school is a recurring low-performing school.  A recurring low-performing school is a school that has been low performing for two of the previous three consecutive years.

 1.     {Effective until September 2016}  Recurring Low-Performing Schools are identified based on two definitions of low performing:

a.     Majority of students performing below grade level and did not meet growth, and

b.     A performance grade of “D” or “F” and did not exceed growth.

 2.     {Effective September 2017}  Recurring Low-Performing Schools are identified based on one definition of low-performing schools:  A

performance grade of “D” or “F” and did not exceed growth.


B.  School Improvement Model Options:

1.     Transformation Model.  In order to qualify for implementation of the transformation model, the LEA must demonstrate that a school has created a plan for developing and improving teacher and school leader effectiveness; for implementing comprehensive instructional reform strategies; for increasing learning time; for creating community-oriented schools; and for providing operational flexibility and sustain support.  The LEA shall submit specific goals for academic achievement and shall submit a budget showing the revenues and expenditures needed to reach the goals.

2.     Restart Model.  The LEA shall submit a detailed plan outline the goals to be achieved, including how to provide each student with the opportunity for a sound basic education; a statement as to how operating the school with the same exemptions from statutes and rules as a charter school authorized under N.C.G.S. 115C-218 et seq. will facilitate accomplishing these goals; how these exemptions will increase student achievement; whether the LEA will employ an educational management organization and, if so, the name and credentials of that organization; and a budget setting out anticipated revenue and expenditures necessary to achieve the goals.

a.     A school operated under this subdivision remains under the control of the local board of education, and employees assigned to the school are employees of the local school administrative unit with the protections provided by Part 3 of Article 22 of Chapter 115C.


3.     Turnaround Model.  The LEA shall submit specific grounds supporting the implementation of this model; shall specify the academic goals expected from implementation of this model; shall specify the procedures to be utilized in removing staff; including procedures consistent with Due Process; shall describe with specificity the new governance structure and the budget to be implemented; and shall set forth specific academic achievement expected to be realized from use of this model.

 4.     School Closure.  The LEA will submit the specific grounds recommending closure of a particular school; the procedures it intends to follow in closing the school, including opportunities for public hearings; the procedures for ensuring a smooth transition for employees and students affected by the closure; how the resources realized from closure will continue to support student achievement; and the specific academic gains expected to be realized by the closure.

C.  Annual Report.  An LEA that has been authorized to implement any of the foregoing models shall submit an annual report by December 1 of each year documenting the academic gains realized by the school.

D.  Declining or Removing Authority for Model.  The SBE may decline to authorize a requested model, if it finds that:

1.     The request for implementation does not adequately outline the necessary components and goals necessary for that model.

2.     The school has failed to achieve the intended goals outlined by the LEA in its request.

3.     The school is operating inconsistently with the request submitted by the LEA.

4.     Any other grounds deemed appropriate and necessary by the SBE.

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